Official Price Cut vs. 10 Billion Subsidies for Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 Phones

Hello everyone, it’s Poison Mushroom here with another mobile phone recommendation!

The annual Xiaomi Fans Festival is the perfect opportunity for fans to purchase new devices in the first half of the year. It’s a chance for those accustomed to shopping on Xiaomi’s online store to fulfill their immediate needs. However, phones from competing brands, even those close rivals like OnePlus, are not sold on Xiaomi’s platform. So, what if you are in dire need of a phone from a different brand?

You’re right; there’s another channel: the billion-dollar subsidies., Taobao, Pinduoduo

Official price cut versus 10 billion subsidies for Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 phones

The most significant advantage of the Xiaomi Fans Festival is the “official price cut”. For example, the Xiaomi 14 series is reduced by 300 yuan, the Xiaomi 14 Pro by 400 yuan, and the foldable MIX Fold 3 has gone straight down by 1000 yuan, hitting a price of 7999 yuan. On platforms like, Taobao, and Pinduoduo, the phones are subsidized by the sales platforms themselves, and most sales channels are third-party sellers. While there is little risk of buying counterfeit goods, if the device has issues after unboxing, it requires an additional step of official inspection.

But the advantage here is the variety of models available. Whether it’s new releases or veteran models that have been on the market for over a year, they’ve all bravely taken the step to lower their prices. Hence, this article will recommend some Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 phones with adjusted prices. All links in this article use’s self-operated prices (subsidy prices cannot be posted), but if Pinduoduo or Tmall offers a lower price, feel free to search on your own.

OnePlus 12

The current price for the 16+512GB version goes as low as 4100-something yuan, approximately 700 yuan less than the official price.

If the freshly launched OnePlus 12 was only known for its product strength, then after the subsidy, it becomes powerful in all respects. From development to positioning and to the quality of hardware, the OnePlus 12 seems to be a “perfect” phone. With a combination of Snapdragon 8 Gen 3, LPDDR5X, and UFS 4.0, its performance is top-tier, and there is no need to discuss that further. Besides, it boasts a top-tier 2K resolution BOE X1 display, super-thin under-display fingerprint recognition that’s more user-friendly than typical designs, the decent LYT-808 new primary camera, periscope telephoto lens capable of taking concert photos, industry-leading bionic tactile engine, USB 3.2 data port, among other features. It is extremely balanced in all aspects. Most crucially, it supports the installation of various plugins after root without any official barriers—in fact, there’s a sort of laissez-faire attitude where if you crash the system while installing plugins, it can be restored for free at any after-sales service center.

Official price cut versus 10 billion subsidies for Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 phones

On the software front, ColourOS 14 has become increasingly user-friendly, adding a lot of practical features such as third-party app call recording, separate volume adjustment, over 200 app clones, AIGC functions, XiaoBu assistant, and more. The OnePlus 12 is, actually, a very well-rounded phone with no prominent weaknesses, reflected in its strong resale value where a second-hand model is not much cheaper than a new one after subsidies. In short, products should be judged by their price, and given its current price, it practically has no drawbacks.

Target audience: Enthusiasts who appreciate comprehensive phone capabilities.

Honor Magic6

No smartphone price can withstand the ravages of time, not even the top-tier eye protection offered by the Honor Magic6 with its leading 4320Hz high-frequency PWM dimming and LTPO variable refresh rate technology. The biggest highlight of this phone is its display. I’m recommending the standard version with a slight curve on the screen, which boasts outstanding local and peak brightness among all smartphones. Coupled with the durable Honor Rhino Glass panel and a five-star drop and shock resistance certification, Magic6’s durability is top-notch amidst flagship models. For the camera, it features a 50MP main camera with OV50H stabilization, a 50MP ultra-wide lens, and a 32MP telephoto lens. Though it lacks a periscope telephoto lens, its 5x hybrid zoom provides decent clarity for everyday use. In terms of battery life, it comes with a 5450mAh/5600mAh large-capacity silicon-carbon anode battery using the second generation of Qinghai Lake technology, self-developed E1 efficiency-enhancing chip, and Honor’s Dujiangyan power management system, making the phone’s battery life extremely solid.

Official price cut versus 10 billion subsidies for Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 phones

Regarding the operating system, Honor’s MagicOS 8.0 is both fun and useful with features like Honor’s Portal and the Dynamic Capsule. The former uses intent-based interaction logic to offer a convenient user experience, while the latter develops a feature first seen on the Honor V20 to facilitate easier phone operation. Magic6 is my daily driver, and I highly recommend it.

Target audience: Those who prioritize system stability and care about eye protection.

Xiaomi 14

As the debut model for the Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 processor, the Xiaomi 14—besides benefitting from the festival’s official price cut—is available on most third-party platforms for less than 4000 yuan for the 16G+1T version, offering high value for money. Xiaomi 14 is arguably the most attractive compact phone released in recent years, with a comfortable small screen handling experience without significantly cutting down on features. Thanks to its exclusive early launch, this phone is likely the best-selling Snapdragon 8gen3 model. The core processor needs no mention. As for peripherals, it features the Light Hunter 900 stabilized main camera, while the ultra-wide and telephoto lenses are the popular Samsung JN1 with 1.5K resolution, providing a delicate viewing experience. However, its eye protection feature is a sort of DC dimming, not the low-brightness high-frequency PWM found in the Pro model.

Official price cut versus 10 billion subsidies for Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 phones

Xiaomi’s MIUI OS continues to be user-friendly, with AI-powered voice assistant Xiao Ai already becoming a nostalgic feature for many users. Additionally, Xiaomi is currently the only brand in the Snapdragon series with a “full ecosystem” covering people, vehicles, and homes. As for its shortcomings, the Xiaomi flagship lineup’s thermal solutions and battery capacity are consistently less impressive compared to its peers, whether it’s the standard, Pro, or Ultra versions. Hence, gaming enthusiasts should brace themselves. As mentioned at the beginning of the article, the price drop during the festival brought down the cost to 4699 yuan; considering the subsidized price, it’s clearly more sincere than the official “price cut.”

Target audience: Fans of compact screens.

iQOO 12

In fact, among Snapdragon 8gen3 smartphones, the iQOO 12 has experienced the fastest and most significant price drop. In the early sales phase, physical stores were offering a reduction of around 300 yuan while the online price remained surprisingly firm. This directly led some users who bought the standard version to regret their decision and pay extra for the iQOO 12 Pro, only to experience the joy of unboxing, if you know what I mean—and yes, I have a friend who went through this. Now, the online price for this phone is also weakening, with Pinduoduo offering the 16+512GB version for less than 3700 yuan. However, I recommend checking offline stores for possibly even lower prices.

Official price cut versus 10 billion subsidies for Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 phones

Currently, this phone boasts a feature of full brightness high-frequency PWM dimming, which I personally find superfluous, but they indeed provided this solution based on update plans. Since everyone is learning by trial and error when it comes to screen dimming, any exploration in this direction deserves recognition.

Target audience: Vivo’s sub-flagship users who prefer Snapdragon over MediaTek processors.

Final Thoughts

After 1-2 months post-launch, most phone models will see a price adjustment. Official prices are unlikely to change, but third-party platform costs tend to drop significantly, especially with Pinduoduo’s pricing strategies even making it common for new releases to see price cuts upon launch. Despite the heated debates among company executives, in reality, manufacturers have tacitly moved away from low-price strategies, with every new phone receiving a price premium. If you’re not in a rush to get the latest model, waiting for prices to stabilize before making a purchase would be far more comfortable.

I have two friends: one who enjoys chasing the latest tech, buying the newest models as they release, and another who prefers older models, not worrying about the prices once in hand. Both could potentially be “backstabbed” by price fluctuations, yet both find joy in their purchases. As I often say, to each their own; let’s respect everyone’s choices and wish for everyone to find the phone they truly desire~

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